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JIM GHEDI

Jim Ghedi

In The Furrows Of Common Place

    “Instead of landscape sketches I wanted to go into more personal areas of my reality,” says Jim Ghedi of his third album In The Furrows Of Common Place. “To hold up certain aspects of society that were laying bare in front of me.”

    Whilst Ghedi’s previous idiosyncratic take on folk has often been instrumental, exploring the natural world and his relationship to it through his music as seen on 2018's A Hymn For Ancient Land. His new album In The Furrow Of Common Place is a deeper plunge inside himself to offer up more of his voice to accompany his profoundly unique and moving compositions. “There were things I was seeing around me and being affected by in my daily life,” he says. “Socially and politically I saw defiance but also hopelessness. I wanted to be honest with the frustration and turmoil I was experiencing.”

    The decision to include more of Ghedi’s vocals was a conscious one and driven by a need to say something. However, this isn’t a brash raging political polemic. As is now customary with Ghedi’s work, it is rich in nuance, history, poetry and allegory. Musically, the album is equally locked into this ongoing sense of evolution. Ghedi’s intricate yet deft guitar playing still twists and flows its way through the core, weaving in and out of gliding double bass, sweeping violin, gentle percussion and vocals that shift from tender solos to overlapping harmonies.

    As with much of Ghedi’s work, there’s a rich connection between the past and the current. Musically, he continues to sit in a singular position of sounding distinctly contemporary yet also with a touch of traditional flair. This expands itself into the lyrical terrain here too. “I've been exploring contemporary issues and in that process discovering sources that correlate with similar issues in the past,” he says. “Which proves that these issues throughout history - environmental destruction, working class poverty etc - are ongoing.”

    For all the socio-political and historical backdrop to the record it is not one that feels overwhelmed by it. Much like Ghedi’s work when it was largely instrumental - and some of it still is here - it flows and unfurls thoughtfully, with space still being utilised masterfully, creating room to pause and reflect. It’s another inimitable record from an artist that truly sounds like nobody else right now. 


    STAFF COMMENTS

    Barry says: An intoxicating mix of traditional folk, hazy psychedelia and classic rock progressions all enriched with Ghedi's distinctive vocal affectations. It's a heady and transportive affair, and one that will reward richly on repeated listens. Gorgeous.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Common Thread
    2. The Lamentations Of Round Oak Waters
    3. Mytholm
    4. Stolen Ground
    5. Ah Cud Hew
    6. Beneath The Willow
    7. Beneath The Willow Part II
    8. Son David

    Jim Ghedi

    A Hymn For Ancient Land

      Fourth release on new independent label Basin Rock following highly acclaimed albums by Julie Byrne and Nadia Reid.

      Born in Sheffield before moving around various parts of Derbyshire, Shropshire and Scotland and then settling in Moss Valley - an abandoned and forgotten area on the edgelands of South Yorkshire and North East Derbyshire - it makes perfect sense that 26 year old Jim Ghedi’s music feels both fluidly transient yet also deeply rooted to a sense of place.

      In 2015 he released his debut album, Home Is Where I Exist, Now To Live and Die (Cambrian Records), which was an extension of the folk-tinged six and twelve-string acoustic guitar instrumentals he had been forging for some time around Sheffield's pubs and then whilst traveling across Europe. On his second album, A Hymn For Ancient Land, his elemental style of playing has expanded into a fuller band set-up, complete with glorious orchestration and dazzling composition that makes it a truly innovative contemporary record whilst still being rooted in great tradition.

      Through the inclusion of double bass, violin, cello, harp, trumpet, piano, accordion and numerous other instruments, Ghedi has elevated his unique blend of folk music to a level far beyond that of that of his earlier work. Perhaps most remarkable still is how seamless their inclusions feel, rather than wrestling for space, the wealth of instruments float in and out of one another, interlocking absorbing guitars, gently whirring strings and drums that beat like the faint sounds of thunder on the horizon.

      On top of the community of Moss Valley, a driving force behind much of the creations on this record come from Ghedi’s travels, playing shows in numerous rural towns and villages across the British Isles. This traversing through remote parts of the UK, Wales, Scotland and Ireland soon brought a desire to capture the full breadth, scale and beauty of the landscapes he was witnessing. “I wanted to bring in wider instrumentation to somehow resemble the landscapes which musically I could hear in my head, It was at this point I became fixated on connecting the two worlds of classical and contemporary folk” Ghedi says of the album’s birthing period.

      All songs on the album are named after places from said travels - ‘Home for Moss Valley’, ‘Bramley Moor’, ‘Cwm Elan’ etc - and Ghedi’s natural ear and eye for capturing the spaces he inhabits creates an immersive environment, in which the guitar lines seem to mirror rolling hills, the rich hum of the ambience hangs like a gentle morning fog and the intricacies and beauty of the arrangements create something almost tangible in their efforts, like capturing a light dew on the tip ends of grass or the sticky moisture of well trampled soil. Nature permeates through this record from start to finish, gliding through its core like a bubbling brook.


      TRACK LISTING

      1 Home For Moss Valley
      2 Cwm Elan
      3 Bramley Moor
      4 Fortingall Yew
      5 Phoenix Works
      6 Banks Of Mulroy Bay
      7 Sloade Lane


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